Savior or Villain? A Corpus Stylistic Approach to the Linguistic Construction of Victim-Survivors of Sexual Violence in Westworld
AbstractThis paper explores how the identity of victim-survivors of sexual violence is portrayed in the dystopian TV series Westworld (2016-present) by analyzing the linguistic characterization of the lead female character, Dolores Abernathy. To do so, this paper adopts a mixed methodology which combines corpus stylistics and Appraisal Theory with a feminist critical reading of the results in order to examine the textual cues in Dolores’ dialogue which characterize her journey from being a victim to becoming an empowered being. The results of the analysis show that the series features a misappropriation of female empowerment and liberation since Dolores presents a masculinization of her fictional identity which mirrors patriarchal practices and attitudes against women.
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